Skip to main content

Dual AMD Radeon R9 295X2 Graphics Cards On A 1000W PSU

We literally turned up the heat to make things more interesting. Using a hot-box with a brutal ambient temperature of 30 degrees Celsius, we took our quad CrossFire setup through its paces with a 1000 W 80 Plus Bronze certified power supply unit. You might assume we'd need a beefier power source, but our launch article measurements indicate that the total power consumption of these two graphics cards plus the benchmarking system should be about 1000 W. This PSU should be able to handle the load without any trouble.

A one-hour gaming loop with almost 100 percent load results in a measured power draw of 1100 W at the Chroma’s primary side. This means that our overall system draw stays well under 1000 W, proving that our previous measurements align almost exactly with what we see in practice.

Then again, we can also remember situations when a single AMD Radeon R9 295X2 managed to shut down a PSU (PCGH, 1200W Enermax Platimax), or even destroy it outright (Tom's Hardware, Corsair AX860i). In these cases, the power supplies should have had more than enough capacity to handle the hardware.

We used a be quiet! Power Zone 1000 W PSU for this experiment in our self-imposed 30-degree-Celsius hotbox. Amazingly, there are no failures to report. The reason for its stability is likely attributable to the better design of its PCIe power connectors. Its capacitors are better able to deal with the AMD Radeon graphics card’s peaks in power consumption.

Our previous attempt with the 1200 W Enermax Platimax and the AMD Radeon R9 295X2 showed us that the PSU did not shut down as many people assumed, but that the motherboard wasn't able to handle a brief decrease in voltage. The PSU’s under voltage protection (UVP) isn't even able to register this particular issue.

The video shows a panning shot of our benchmark setup with Chroma and power supply.

So what have we learned? Primarily that nothing beats precise measurements and a clean, well-thought-out primary side of a PSU. Prestigious certificates don't amount to much, because it's what’s inside is what counts. Finally, the AMD Radeon R9 295X2 isn’t as bad as its reputation might suggest, as long as it’s combined with the right PSU.

Relevant Links:Radeon R9 295X2 8 GB Review: Project Hydra Gets Liquid CoolingUpdate: Radeon R9 295X2 8 GB In CrossFire: Gaming At 4K

  • damric
    Where are the rest of the pages to this review?
    Reply
  • Johnny Beacon
    why would you deliberately run these cards in 30 degree room? i know why because you want to bring on throttling so you have something to complain about, why because you are nvidia biased and have been for to long a period of time. Ive been reading toms since it started way back in the 90's. But i am becoming sick of the brand bias shown in many reviews. Keep to the facts - real facts about real world situations, if as we all know cards are hot and power hungry run them with an appropriate psu in the appropriate conditions... PS if you can buy 2x295 you can and will afford to run your "expletive" air conditioning!!!!
    Reply
  • blackmagnum
    If I had the money to do this stunt... this is for the nerds and geeks who hate Mother nature (and embrace the Industrial Age).
    Reply
  • Anakha00
    Did you even read anything past the bolded intro Johnny? The entire point of this "review" had nothing to do with the GPU benchmarks, it was all about what the required wattage is for the 295X2. I'll summarize this article for you and anyone else that just skims it: 295X2 doesn't require as much wattage as other sites may say, but does require certain high quality components only found on specific PSUs.

    Also it wasn't even mentioned that the GPU was hitting its throttling temp, at only 8 degrees higher ambient than the review for these GPUs it's likely that they weren't hitting their ceiling of 75 degrees. Here's the page I'm talking about if you want to check: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-r9-295x2-review-benchmark-performance,3799-17.html
    Reply
  • Anakha00
    Edit, double post >_<
    Reply
  • ohim
    14046956 said:
    why would you deliberately run these cards in 30 degree room? i know why because you want to bring on throttling so you have something to complain about, why because you are nvidia biased and have been for to long a period of time. Ive been reading toms since it started way back in the 90's. But i am becoming sick of the brand bias shown in many reviews. Keep to the facts - real facts about real world situations, if as we all know cards are hot and power hungry run them with an appropriate psu in the appropriate conditions... PS if you can buy 2x295 you can and will afford to run your "expletive" air conditioning!!!!

    Don`t act stupid, some people do live in 30 degree environments ...and having such a card not being able to run in a 30°C room is a serious argument against it. And i do love AMD since my whole rig is based on AMD only but your comment is ridiculous.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    14047403 said:
    Don`t act stupid, some people do live in 30 degree environments ...and having such a card not being able to run in a 30°C room is a serious argument against it.
    Exactly.

    Just about any place on Earth except polar caps can have 30-40C days during their summer season and not everyone has AC or runs it continuously. I run my AC mostly for dehumidifaction; on a dry 35C day, I do not usually bother to start it - between the AC's noise and the heat, I prefer the heat as long as it is dry.
    Reply
  • i7Baby
    Anyone come across a way to boost radiator fan and pump speeds to minimize throttling?

    OPs are complaining about early throttling of these things.
    Reply
  • oxiide
    why would you deliberately run these cards in 30 degree room? i know why because you want to bring on throttling so you have something to complain about, why because you are nvidia biased and have been for to long a period of time. Ive been reading toms since it started way back in the 90's. But i am becoming sick of the brand bias shown in many reviews. Keep to the facts - real facts about real world situations, if as we all know cards are hot and power hungry run them with an appropriate psu in the appropriate conditions... PS if you can buy 2x295 you can and will afford to run your "expletive" air conditioning!!!!
    I don't even know where to start with this. Tom's didn't run GPU performance benchmarks, they didn't complain about GPU throttling, they fully disclosed the testing environment, and they ended the article by saying POSITIVE things about the R9 295X2. Likewise, their original review of the 295X2 was also generally positive.

    They ran the test at 30°C because it is a torture test, its meant to reflect a worst-case scenario. Experiments solely designed around real usage don't tell us anything about the real limitations of these products, and that is very useful information.

    If you've really been reading this site since the 90's, surely you'd have noticed a Best Graphics Cards For The Money article once or twice, which are generally dominated by AMD cards.
    Reply
  • Daniel Ladishew
    You mention testing with a Corsair AX860i, which seems under powered for a setup that pulls ~1000W. Your PSU reviews usually have high praise for Corsair products, but that specific test seemed designed to fail. Have you considered testing with a Corsair model in the appropriate Wattage range? Say for instance the HX1050 (80+ Gold) or the HX1000i (80+ Platinum)?
    Reply